Kolkata to get India's first renewable energy college
The country is all set to get its first renewable energy college next year, which is going to start in the city from January 2012.
The college, to be located off EM Bypass at Madurdaha, will be inaugurated by Dr R K Pachauri who heads the Nobel award winning organization, Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change (IPCC). Students passing out from the college will get a diploma certified by Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU) and the technical education department of the government of Queensland state, Australia.
The college is the brainchild of renewable energy expert and Ashden award winner S P Gon Chaudhuri, who is presently the adviser to the state government's power department. It was a few years ago, while interacting with officials of the Queensland state government's technical education that Gon Chaudhuri got the idea to set up an exclusive college where renewable energy could be taught as a subject.
"Much is happening in the field of solar energy, but there is a lack of experts and engineers in the field. To achieve the target of the National Solar Mission to generate 20,000 MW of solar energy by 2022 in the entire country, around 50,000 solar power engineers will be required in the next 10 years. Students who pass out from this college will be recognised as renewable energy engineers," said Gon Chaudhuri, who will head the college as its chairman. The college has been set up by a society with its own funding - NB Institute for Rural Development (NBIRT) - which is also headed by Gon Chaudhuri.
The college will offer a one-year diploma course including two semesters. The total course fee is yet to be chalked out. Ric Harper from Queensland state technical education department had come to the city to chalk out the course details. Gon Chaudhuri along with two others will be the college's teaching staff. "The entire programme will be computerised where there will be on-line interaction between students and experts of Queensland state," Gon Chaudhuri said.
There will be a total 40 seats -- 20 in each semester. Seventeen engineering students from different institutes like JU and Besu have already enrolled for the first session to start from January. "Even before the course has started, seven of the 17 have already got jobs through campus recruitment in various solar power module developing companies. We are starting off with the diploma course and will slowly think about introducing a degree course also," Gon Chaudhuri said. Officials from the ministry of new and renewable energy are slated to visit the college in February next year.
The college will have sophisticated classrooms and laboratories, including a library room. There will be roof-top solar panels and modules for students to gain practical knowledge.